Lost At Sea: The Jon Ronson Mysteries
Jon Ronson, MacMillan ($40)
Ronson investigates the strange things we’re willing to believe in, from lifelike robots programmed with our loved ones’ personalities to indigo children to hyper-successful spiritual healers to the Insane Clown Posse’s juggalo fans. He looks at ordinary lives that take on extraordinary perspectives, for instance a pop singer whose life’s greatest passion is the coming alien invasion, and the scientist designated to greet those aliens when they arrive. Amateur nuclear physicists, assisted-suicide practitioners, the town of North Pole, Alaska’s Christmas-induced high school mass-murder plot: Ronson explores all these tales with a sense of higher purpose and universality, and suddenly, mid-read, they are stories not about the fringe of society or about people far removed from our own experience, but about all of us.